Monday, March 26, 2007

Daisy, I'm Going To Wipe Your Nose Because I Can't Paint Over Bogies.

Not much blogging done the last few days due to the fact that it has been Sunny and Nice and Springlike for the past few days. The annual wonderful gap between howling gales and horizontal freezing rain, and The Midges is here. (It's here now because we have relatives visiting next week and it is going to piss down all the time they are here and we will have to repeat the Highland Mantra - "Och, you should have been here last week, the weather was chust sublime!" And they will not believe us. Again. This happens every year.

So, for the past few days, Merriol, the kids, and I have been wandering around smiling at people we haven't seen for months and being amazed the sky is still blue. Look, the sky is still blue! Daisy just looks up and says "It's not raining," a lot in a puzzled tone.

As a consequence I found myself doing Classic Dad Thing number 34 today. Holly came from school and wanted to watch the box. "No," I said slipping into 'things I swore I would never say to my kids' mode, "it's a lovely day. Look, the sun's shining, go outside and bloody frolic."

I have also been contemplating the The Mathematical Impossibilities of Socks. (There's a doctorate just waiting to be picked up by someone here). I hate pairing socks. I'm sure I've blogged about this before - but the chore I hate mostest in the whole wild world is matching socks up with their mates. And I seem to do so much of it. Every day I pair up more pairs of socks than any four people could possibly wear in one day (unless they were professional sock filthiers of course - I'm sure there are such things somewhere in the world. Japan probably. I'm not going to look just in case I'm right, but I just had a vision of middle-aged Japanese businessmen buying professionally-soiled, white, schoolgirl knee-socks from vending machines on station platforms - oh god, I need to get outside more often.)

Where do they all come from? (Socks I mean, not weird pervy thoughts about Japanese Businessmen). There's some sort of Inverse Square law going on here; the further you get away from a pair of feet the more odd socks there are per cubic whatever. I'm sure we have a greater number of socks in the odd sock box than than we actually own in total. I'm sure if you added up all the odd socks in the world it would turn out to be some impossibly high number - possibly larger than the number of atoms in the Universe. How can socks disappear in such vast numbers? Socks in our house live in a closed cycle:

Feet > Laundry Basket > Washing Machine > Drying room > Feet

It is possible for socks to go through the whole cycle many times without leaving the house. At what point is it possible for Adult Socks to vanish from this virtuous circle? There isn't one. It's a closed loop. It's impossible. Where do they go? The kid's socks live by completely different and complicated life cycle. A typical Holly sock cycle might go something like:

Right foot > Welly boot > Bedroom Floor > Laundry basket > Washing Machine > Odd Sock Box

Left Foot > Welly boot > Back of car > Teddy Head > Down the back of the sofa (for weeks) > Living Room Floor > Laundry basket > Washing Machine > Odd Sock Box.

I would guess that in our house you are never more than three feet away from one of Holly's lost socks.

Today when I was fuming away in the Drying Room pairing up today's sock mountain I had the urge to justify the space taken up by the six hundred or so LPs in the living room - and actually played one for the first time in months - only to discover that though the syncopated style of Gene Krupa was happily belting out of the right-hand speaker, I was hearing the kid's Ceebeebies TV channel through the left. Somewhere in the insane tangle of electric spaghetti down the back of the TV / AMP /MiniDisc / VHS/ DVD / Tape-Deck / Record Player /Skybox / Playstation mountain - something had come loose. Luckily I have a lot of Mono records so I played them with the balance whanged over to the right hand channel.

I hate tracing cables more than I hate pairing socks.

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